Swansea City Opera visit Middlesbrough Theatre on Saturday, May 6 with Lakmé following their highly acclaimed 2016 tour of La Bohème.
If the word ‘opera’ brings an image of a lady singing glass-shatteringly loud in French and that thought sends you running to the hills, you're missing out!
Many operas are so famous that they’ve entered into popular culture and Lakmé is definitely one of those operas where you recognise the music but don’t know why or where from!
This jewel of an opera is best known for the famous ‘Flower Duet’, which has become one of the most familiar numbers any composer, in any genre, has ever written, even used by our national airline on their TV ads as the peaceful accompaniment to a jetliner floating through wispy clouds!
As so often with operas that become famous for a particular tune however, Lakmé contains many other hidden musical gems including the stratospheric and challenging ‘Bell Song’.
Like other French operas of the period, it captures the ambience of the Orient seen through Western eyes and, topically for today, tells of religious tensions and conflict leading to personal sacrifice, heartbreak and death.
Swansea City Opera are setting their production of Lakmé in India during the Raj of the 1880s, sung in English and accompanied by chamber orchestra.
Like Delibes’ music for his famous ballet Coppélia, the orchestral scoring for Lakmé is delicious and as the opera remains a relative rarity, don’t miss this golden opportunity to hear and see it at Middlesbrough Theatre this May.
There will be a pre-performance talk about the opera and production given by the Artistic Director of Swansea City Opera, Brendan Wheatley at 6.15pm.